Santhal is one of the most populous tribes of India. The Santhal people live in the states of Jharkhand, West Bengal, Odisha and Assam. Whose population is more than 70 lakhs as per the 2011 Census. They primarily sustain their livelihood on agriculture.
Many creative and performing art forms are prevalent among the Santhal community, in which dances have an important place. Among the major dances of the Santhal tribe, the Sohrai dance is held for five days in the month of September. Dag dance is a dance performed on the occasion of marriage in which all the guests present also dance. Lagade is an agricultural dance performed at the conclusion of the harvest cycle. It has also been a tradition to perform this dance by the villagers in the evening in leisure moments. Karam is another dance performed on the occasion of Karam Puja. Both men and women take part in all these dances. There is another dance called Karam in Santhal society which is a mourning dance and is performed only by women after one's death. In all these dances, various associated songs are also sung by the Santhal in accompaniment of musical instruments like Tungra Tamak, Tiriya, Dutara etc. The dancers wear traditional Santhal clothing called panchhi and lungi on the occasion of the dance.